It’s episode seven of The Voice Australia 2023 and Coach Jessica Mauboy has received the shock of her life as she was reunited with two men who helped give her a start in her career.
Folk music legends The Bushwackers took to the stage hoping to appeal to a new generation. If you’re a 90s kid, you may remember this duo as the guys who sang the Heel and Toe Polka!
Performing the nostalgic and iconic song, I Am Australian, all four coaches turned around to see two men in their seventies, with Jess becoming emotional the minute she saw them.
According to the singer, when she was 14, The Bushwackers became her impromptu band and helped her win a country music competition in Tamworth.
“I can’t believe this is happening, it’s a full circle of my life,” she said.
On top of this, there was a shock revelation as it turned out that member Dobe Newtown co-wrote I Am Australian with Bruce Woodley from The Seekers. Unbelievable!
Coach Guy Sebastian also had a special connection to the song, recalling his move to Australia in 1988.
“I had a Malaysian accent, my culture was pretty different… whenever I felt like I didn’t fit in as a kid I would sing that song.”
17-year-old Elsa Marilyn performed a stripped-back version of Big Yellow Taxi by Joni Mitchell which won over the coaches, turning all four chairs.
Coach Rita said: “That for me was a perfect audition. There was not one flaw,” while Guy called Elsa his “favourite voice that I’ve heard on The Voice 2023.”
Elsa chose Rita as her coach.
27-year-old New Zealander Marley Sola earnt four chair turns with his knockout performance of Ribbon in the Sky by Stevie Wonder; the same song that Guy performed for his Australian Idol audition. After choosing Team Guy, Marley and Guy performed a duet of the song.
Victorian music teacher Elly Poletti performed Lady Gaga’s A Million Reasons turning all four chairs. Rita and Guy went head-to-head again, with Rita calling the 32-year-old’s voice “perfection”.
Guy blocked her mid-pitch, before convincing Elly to join his team.
25-year-old avid birdwatcher Jade Talbot learned how to sing from listening to birds. Performing Celine Dion’s It’s All Coming Back to Me Now, she turned Coach Jason’s chair.
Gabby Asta, 22 from Victoria, performed a gritty interpretation of Tate McRae’s She’s All I Wanna Be. Both Rita and Guy turned their chairs, pitting both the coaches against each other.
Gabby chose Team Rita.